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How I Traveled for Free: A Free Stay at the Venetian in Las Vegas on IHG Rewards

Jan. 18, 2019
Loyalty Programs, Travel
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Kerwin MacKenzie was in Las Vegas for a conference and stayed at the Venetian for free using IHG Rewards.

The loyalty program

Name: Kerwin MacKenzie
Age: 53
Occupation: Travel Entrepreneur with Cruising Altitude
Home: Houston
Loyalty program: IHG Rewards

The stay

Hotel name and city: The Venetian in Las Vegas
Dates of stay: Jan. 9 – 10, 2018
What kind of room: Deluxe room

Q: What amenities did you take advantage of?

A: None sadly. They do have a pool.

Q: Did you travel alone or with someone?

A: I traveled alone. I was in Las Vegas for the CES conference and the hotel rooms were really pricey for that night, so using points worked well.

The loyalty program

Q: What loyalty program did you use to get a free stay?

A: IHG Rewards.

Q: How long were you a cardholder/member at that time?

A: It’s been ages. It’s my favorite program. I’m currently Spire Ambassador.

Q: How long were you planning for this?

A: I booked it within two weeks of the stay.

Q: What’s your favorite perk of this program?

A: Early check-in/late check-out. You really can’t beat this.

Redemption and booking

Q: Did you take advantage of promotions while earning points for this trip?

A: No, there weren’t any available.

Q: Where/how did you book?

A: I booked it on the IHG website.

Q: How many points/rewards did this cost?

A: 60,000.

Q: Did you book in conjunction with a promotion or deal?

A: No.

Q: Any surprises or upgrades?

A: When I checked in the concierge did not realize I was Spire Elite for some reason, so I did not get the usual offer of a gift basket and complimentary water. I had to remind him. He looked it up and apologized, and a few hours later as the hotel was full and things were running late, I had my fruit basket and water.

What’s your next travel rewards goal?

I want to stay at all the IHG Intercontinental, so I’m saving to 60,000 points so I can do a reward stay for the next city I visit that has an Intercontinental.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2019, including those best for:

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About the author